1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Can you leave a year long maternity contract early

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Annanix1989, Apr 6, 2016.

  1. Annanix1989

    Annanix1989 New commenter

    Hi, this is a bit of a nothing has actually happened yet scenario but...I've got an interview for a year long maternity post coming up . It's an hour plus commute but art jobs are few and far between in the NE. What's caused the dilemma is I know there's a job coming up at a school I recently spent 3 month in (20 min away) and loved for September, maternity post starts in May. I know they can end maternity posts pretty much when they want but where would you stand if you were offered a permanent role elsewhere. Is it totally unprofessional/ illegal to change?

    I'm currently on supply and have regular work and a terms worth of work lined up for after Easter but ideally I need to do my NQT asap otherwise I'd be tempted to leave the maternity and just wait it out.

    Any advice would be massively appreciated
  2. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    Have you already accepted a job? If so, then no - it's pretty unprofessional to continue looking on the oft-chance that something 'better' comes along.

    If you haven't, but are just looking at jobs, then your post doesn't make sense.....
  3. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    Edit- I reread so.....

    I think I understand - you are applying at the moment and there's a maternity job advertised. You want to apply for it, accept it if offered.....but you are aware that another job at another school that is more ideal and permanent might come up in May. So, you want to apply for that and if you get offered it, will turn around to the school that has the maternity post and tell them you found something better?

    Very unprofessional. The school advertising now would have to incur more expense and inconvenience when you turn around in May and 'quit'. Bad move. You might find yourself without a job at the new school and your references won't be impressed either.

    All I can say is.....shockingly unprofessional.....
  4. Annanix1989

    Annanix1989 New commenter

    You've got it right second time around ,

    Thank you for your response. I just wanted to try and make sure I've weighed up and considered things before I commit to anything as I'm considering pulling out of the maternity Interview so as not to mess people around. I don't take the idea of jumping from job to job lightly as I know the time and expense that goes into recruitment etc and he upheavel to students with change. That being said I also have to think of myself and was curious to know where I would stand if a permanent job came up in comparison to one that was for a year or less.
  5. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    Fair enough. :) It just seems all a bit hyothetical - I wouldn't not apply for the maternity job, but if offered it, you would then have some serious thinking to do, but there's no guarantee that the second school will definitely have a job going and that you will get it (or do you?) - if it's definite in relation to the second school (and you have a job from September there), then don't apply for the maternity, but if nothing is certain, then you do have some thinking to do.....
  6. Tigger1962

    Tigger1962 New commenter

    Usually maternity leave contracts have early termination clauses as post-holders can return at short notice for any reason and often do to be paid for holiday periods.
    You need to check that the terms are equal on both sides - some people have posted about very unfair terms that the signed without thinking of the implications - such as the school being able to give a week's notice but the maternity contract being bound by normal resignation dates (although these may be legally dodgy).
    I don't think it is wrong to change if a job that suits you better becomes available when you are on a short term contract - by their nature schools know that a time-limited contract is not a long term career post from either side.
    wanet likes this.
  7. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    Correct! Unfair and could possibly be challenged legally as such, but difficult to do so.

    However, if normal resignation dates are included, you could start the maternity cover this term, and still hand in your notice by 31 May for September's permanent post.

    Here's another however coming up. However, if you are thinking of applying for a permanent post immediately on starting your maternity post, the school receiving your application could look askance on this. It could also make your relationship with the maternity school somewhat fraught if they knew immediately that you were jumping ship - or trying to. You would have to tell them that you were applying, you see.

    Do I have to tell my Head I am applying elsewhere?

    And yet another one . . . However, if you are thinking of applying for the other post before starting the maternity post, having accepted it, and expecting to take it instead of the maternity one, you would be on dodgy ground, as I explain here.

    Two interviews and a dilemma

    You tell us that jobs in your subject are not very common. This will mean that there is a lot of competition for that other job when it comes up. My suggestion is that you consider which is more important to you - having a job and salary, or having a job in that other school.

    If you can risk unemployment, then you can choose the second school, the one that you prefer. If you cannot, then perhaps you should go to the first interview and if you are successful and feel that you could work happily there, accept that job and put the other school out of your thoughts.

    Best wishes

  8. install

    install Star commenter

    The school, having got someone to cover maternity for a year will be thinking about the impact on the students. They will want some level of continuity.

    It is a case of counting your blessings ....a job for a year isn't to be sniffed at.

Share This Page